Recent TV 2 poll: Four out of ten people from Bergen have weakened confidence in the city council

It is not just the politicians in Bergen who are divided in their views on where Bybanen should go.

The people of Bergen are also almost divided in the middle in the question of whether the Bybanen should be laid over Bryggen or in a tunnel towards Åsane.

It emerges in a brand new Kantar poll, where TV 2 has asked the people of Bergen what they think.

The questions:

  • Where do you think the light rail route should be located?
  • The City Council decided yesterday to put Bybanen in a tunnel. Do you agree or disagree with the decision?
  • Has confidence in the city council changed after the city railway decision, and has it then been strengthened or weakened?

This is what the inhabitants think

When asked where the route should be laid, 43.8 per cent answer that Bybanen should cross Bryggen.

46.8 percent believe the track should go in a tunnel. 9.4 percent answer “do not know”.

This means that the people of Bergen, like the politicians, are very divided in their views on route choices.

When asked whether the residents agree or disagree with the city council’s decision to put Bybanen in a tunnel, 48.8 per cent answered “agree”.

43.6 per cent answered “disagree”, while 7.6 per cent answered “do not know”.

Weakened confidence

To the last question whether trust in the city council has been strengthened or weakened after the light rail decision, 38.8 per cent answer that trust is «weakened», while 36.5 per cent answer that trust is unchanged.

10.7 per cent that confidence has been “strengthened”.

14 percent answer “do not know” to the question of trust.

This means that almost four out of ten people from Bergen have weakened confidence in the city council, and that this is a direct consequence of the urban railway decision.

Therefore, the urban railway chaos can be catastrophic for the whole of Bergen

Commentator: – Disfigures his city

TV 2’s political commentator Aslak Eriksrud says the figures clearly show that people’s confidence in politicians has weakened, and that they are tired of the hesitation.

Eriksrud simply believes it is time for the politicians in Bergen to sharpen up, and work together to find solutions that bring the city out of disability.

– My interpretation of the poll is that it is about to overflow for the city’s population. Now the politicians must sharpen up and move on. I do not think it is the case for the people of Bergen that Bybanen is more important than all other political issues, says Eriksrud.

He aims for Norway’s second largest city to have a wealth of other important issues that need attention, be it school, elderly policy and other social challenges.

See TV 2 commentator Aslak Eriksrud’s clear message to the Bergen politicians:

– This is completely comical, this. In all contexts that deal with urban development, the urban railway route is included as a bargaining chip time and time again. Parties have changed their minds over the years, and the decision on where to lay these tram rails overturns absolutely everything and sends the city into political chaos, says Eriksrud and continues:

– I do not know if I should laugh or cry. It’s like a play, but is it a comedy or a tragedy? I think the Bergen politicians should leave it to the National Stage to take care of this, so the parties can do their job instead of spoiling their city.

– Stupid idea

In addition to Kantar’s poll, TV 2 took to the streets to hear the people’s voice from their own mouths.

In Åsane, which is intended to be the terminus for the light rail once it is built, people are both satisfied and dissatisfied with the city council’s decision.

This is despite the fact that the decision may postpone construction indefinitely.

HAPPY: Steffen Larsen thinks Bybanen had ruined the view on Bryggen.  Photo: Mathias Kleiveland / TV 2

HAPPY: Steffen Larsen thinks Bybanen had ruined the view on Bryggen. Photo: Mathias Kleiveland / TV 2

– Much of the experience of being on Bryggen is the opportunity to look beyond everything. If Bybanen is to go there, it will block the view. It is of course strange that the course may not come to Åsane, but I think we will survive, says Steffen Larsen.

Scott Godfrey is an Englishman, but has lived in Åsane with his wife for eight years. He thinks Bryggen is the best.

– I think that tunnel is a stupid idea. It makes no sense. Now it looks like Bybanen will not come to Åsane at all, says Godfrey, and aims for the long time it will take to make the tunnel.

Do not think confidence is weakened

At Bryggen itself, most people are happy with the tunnel decision.

In addition to ruining the view, many believe that any archaeological finds could delay construction time indefinitely.

– I think a lot about the history of the area and how much had been stopped by having the light rail here. In the summer, Bryggen is a beautiful place for both residents and tourists, and the course would ruin this, says Knut Henrik Høyås.

OPINION: Eivind does not believe that trust in politicians has weakened after the light rail decision.  Photo: Mathias Kleiveland / TV 2

OPINION: Eivind does not believe that trust in politicians has weakened after the light rail decision. Photo: Mathias Kleiveland / TV 2

A passer-by named Eivind is happy with the decision, and does not think confidence in politicians has weakened as a result of the chaos that arose after the city council resigned.

– No, I do not really want to say that. It is clear that with the time everything has taken, it is important that the politicians come together. There has been a vote, and then I hope that the sitting city council will acknowledge it and work to bring about the solution that has emerged, he says.

Minister of Transport and Communications: – Too bad

One of the questions is whether the state’s financing of the light rail route will continue, now that a tunnel has been chosen instead of the approved Bryggen alternative.

It is previously known that the state would finance a large part of the costs. Now this is uncertain, and Minister of Transport Jon-Ivar Nygård told TV 2 on Thursday afternoon that it is a shame with a new step back.

– It is an important project to get more people to travel by public transport. So of course I do not think that is ok, but we must respect and relate to what local authorities decide.

COMMENT: Minister of Transport Jon-Ivar Nygård says the state funding is partly dependent on not choosing the most expensive solutions.  Photo: Boy, Heiko

COMMENT: Minister of Transport Jon-Ivar Nygård says the state funding is partly dependent on not choosing the most expensive solutions. Photo: Boy, Heiko

Will the state aid be in danger of being withdrawn now that the route will go in a tunnel and not over Bryggen?

– That’s not how it works. We have had a scheme that has been a fifty-fifty financing model, but what is in the scheme is that we say that one must be very careful with the costs. One should not choose the most expensive solutions. You must choose solutions that are in line with what the municipality itself would have chosen if you were to finance it on your own, says Nygård and adds:

– So it will be an important management signal for us to say that one can not expect the state to cover cost increases when choosing something that is more expensive than strictly necessary.

About the survey:

Implemented by: Kantar

Theme: Assessment of urban railway route and city council decisions.

Target group: Bergen’s population 18 years and older.

Sample: 860 respondents, randomly selected from the target group.

Method: SMS invitation with web form.

Data collection: 25.11.21, 15: 00-18: 00.

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